OREM — Elizabeth Hitch has been named interim president of Utah Valley University.

Jed Pitcher, chairman of the Utah Board of Regents, on Thursday appointed Hitch, who currently serves as vice president for academic affairs at UVU, to the position.

She will assume her duties Aug. 18 when current President Bill Sederburg leaves to become the seventh Utah commissioner of higher education.

"I am confident Dr. Hitch will ensure there is a smooth transition at Utah Valley University," said Board of Regents Chair Jed Pitcher. "The university plays a critical role in meeting the higher education needs of central Utah. Liz is a highly qualified leader who will maintain the university's progress."

Hitch, who has been at UVU since July 2007, has more than 35 years of experience in higher education.

"At UVU, we have a clear plan and vision for the future based upon our model for engaged learning," Hitch said. "We're not going to miss a beat as we work on the strategic directions that have been endorsed by university faculty and staff, the trustees, and our community partners."

Hitch and her husband Keith have been married over 35 years. They have

two daughters, Meredith Sinclair and Greer Hitch, who both reside in

Salt Lake, a son-in-law, Cory Sinclair, and a grandson, Adam.

Pitcher also said the search for the new UVU president will be co-chaired by regents Marlon Snow and Jack Zenger, assisted by regent vice-chair Bonnie Jean Beesley and regent Joel Wright.

The search committee will also include representatives of the UVU board of trustees, faculty, staff, students, and members of the community.